Review Blog

Sep 11 2018

Dinosaur day out by Sarah Acton

cover image

Walker Books 2018. ISBN 9781760650049
(Age:4+) When the children go off to the museum with Dad for the day, they are hoping to go to the dinosaur exhibition, but today that gallery is closed. So Dad buys a book about dinosaurs from the museum shop and they head off to the park instead. Here he tells them all about dinosaurs as they climb trees, hang from the branches, go on a train ride, have lunch, look at the harbour, look into the lily pond then catch the train back home. But the illustrations will capture the readers' attentions as they see what really happens as Dad keeps talking, reading the book and eating.
The tree they climb is a diplodocus, a pterodactyl hangs from the brach next to them, they spy a spinosaurus in the harbour, while a sarcoshucus is lying in the pond and a tyrannosaurus follows them to the train. Dinosaur lovers (every child) will scream with laughter seeing the contrast between the words and the images, and revel in the information about each creature.
I love Acton's illustrative technique (search out The unexpected crocodile for a laugh). She combines watercolour and pencil with a smattering of collage to depict these amazing dinosaurs, ensuring every reader sees some of the characteristics of these beasts, while cherishing the relationship between Dad and the two children as they spend the day together, Dad with his nose in his book, and eating at every opportunity, while the kids roam the park, being involved in outdoor activities and seeing things that pass him by. The underlying humour is infectious and ensure this book will be a firm class favourite.
Fran Knight

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